Electoral analyst tips victory for LNP despite ‘terrible’ week
BLUNDERS cost the LNP momentum in the election’s third week, but will not cost them victory.
That’s Queensland electoral analyst Dr Paul Williams’ belief as the election campaign nears its end.
Dr Williams, a Griffith University politics lecturer, said radio host Alan Jones’ claims the government was beholden to commercial mining interests, and the responding defamation suit from Mr Newman and other senior cabinet members, had hurt how voters saw the government.
“The public perception is that in launching a defamation suit the Premier is a ‘whinger’, or has a ‘glass jaw’. There’s a view pollies should be able to take it,” he said.
DrWilliams pointed to police union president Ian Leavers’ claims the government lied about increasing Safe Night Out funding – which the government has denied, the LNP “reversing the onus of proof” on claiming bikies were backing Labor’s campaign, and stating election promises were tied to LNP members being re-elected as other government “own goals”.
“The Labor Party had an average week. But they didn’t need to have a great one,” he said.
“The LNP had a good first week, a not so bad second week, but week three was terrible for them.”
DrWilliams said the turnaround for Labor to be in with a chance of winning, just three years after being almost wiped out, was “extremely unusual”.
Despite the government’s week from hell, DrWilliams said he expected it would be re-elected on Saturday – with the thinnest of margins.
“I’m still tipping a very narrow LNP victory. They’ll probably end up with seats in the high 40s.
“But a hung parliament is a very real possibility.”
A party must have at least 45 members elected to hold a majority government.
The LNP currently has 73 members and Labor just nine. DrWilliams said minor parties had struggled to make headway this campaign and would be unlikely to win new seats.
Despite the LNP’s attempts to separate state and federal issues Dr Williams said the Abbott government’s actions continued to haunt the LNP.
He said the Prime Minister’s decision to knight Prince Philip would have “gone down like a lead balloon” in LNP offices.
Mr Newman has repeatedly tried to distance himself from Mr Abbott, stating he did not need to be “propped up”.
Mr Abbott’s unpopularity was seen as a key reason the Victorian Liberals lost government in November last year.
Dr Paul Williams They’ll probably end up with seats in the high 40s.
BAD LOOK: Election analyst Dr Paul Williams said the Premier launching a defamation suit against broadcaster Alan Jones was a made move.